Stock Futures Stall as Trade Tensions Simmer

President Trump tweeted that "tariffs are working big time"

Patrick Martin
Aug 6, 2018 at 9:14 AM
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U.S. stock futures are struggling for direction this morning, as investors await the next domino to fall in the tit-for-tat trade war exchanges between the U.S. and its global counterparts. Over the weekend, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to announce that "tariffs are working big time." Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are trading slightly below fair value, while S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) are virtually flat. Markets are also eager to digest the latest round of corporate earnings, with Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) an early winner today. 

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

  • These 2 energy stocks are ripe for a rally.
  • One call trader nailed IBM's stock pop.
  • This lesser-known grocery stock scaled the NYSE on Friday.
  • Plus, PepsiCo's CEO steps down; Intel stock gets downgraded; and SeaWorld cheers a surprise earnings beat.

Stock Futures Chart Aug 6

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1.04 million call contracts traded on Friday, compared to 587,821 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.56, while the 21-day moving average dipped to 0.62.
  2. PepsiCo, Inc. (NASDAQ:PEP) stock is up 0.8% in electronic trading, after the firm said CEO Indra Nooyi will be stepping down after 12 years with the beverage giant. Pepsi President Ramon Laguarta will succeed Nooyi. Since falling to a two-year low of $95.94 on May 9, PEP shares have rallied 22%, guided higher by their ascending 10-day and 20-day moving averages. The stock closed Friday at $116.30.
  3. Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) stock is down 1.7% ahead of the bell, after receiving a downgrade to "equal weight" from "overweight" at Barclays, as well as a price-target cut to $53 from $62. The analyst in coverage attributed the bearish note to steep competition for the chipmaker. INTC stock scored a 17-year high of $57.59 on June 4, but since then has given back 14% to settle Friday at $49.63.  
  4. Shares of SeaWorld Entertainment Inc (NYSE:SEAS) are up 16.8% in electronic trading, after the firm reported second-quarter earnings and revenue that exceeded analyst expectations. Fueling the upbeat report was a jump in attendance numbers at theme parks. SeaWorld stock has already gained 55% in 2018, and could hit four-year highs if today's expected price action plays out. 
  5. There is no notable economic data scheduled for today. However, Cardinal Health (CAH), Dynavax (DVAX), Etsy (ETSY), Hertz Global (HTZ), Marriott (MAR), Mosaic (MOS), Newell Brands (NWL), Plug Power (PLUG), Red Robin (RRGB), Tenet Healthcare (THC), Tyson Foods (TSN), Twilio (TWLO), Weight Watchers (WTW), and Zillow Group (ZG) are slated to report earnings.
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stock market news august 6

Bank Stocks Lift Hong Kong's Hang Seng

Markets in Asia closed mostly lower in today's trading. Japan's Nikkei shed 0.08% on the back of falling bank stocks, while South Korea's Kospi succumbed to a 0.05% loss, and China's Shanghai Composite shed 1.3%. On the flip side, Hong Kong's Hang Seng managed to snap its five-day losing streak, tacking on 0.5% following well-received bank earnings. 

European markets are mixed at midday, as fears of a hard Brexit resurfaced following the U.K. Trade Secretary Liam Fox's prediction of "60-40" odds that the breakup will take place without a European Union (EU) trade deal. Germany's DAX is 0.2% higher, while London's FTSE 100 and France's CAC 40 are down 0.03%, and 0.06% loss, respectively. 


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